words of wisdom

Words of Wisdom: Lupita Nyong’o

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One of my favorite movies of this year was Black Panther. For those that recall, I was in Kenya when the movie was released and, while I didn’t get to see it before I left the country, I did see the national pride for Lupita Nyong’o, the stunner that played Nakia, a brilliant spy whose wisdom saved Wakanda from certain implosion.

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I can’t help but think that Lupita and Nakia have a great deal in common. Lupita’s confidence, poise and intelligence are traits that moviegoers easily identified in Nakia. It was difficult to distinguish between the character and the real, life Nyong’o.

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One of the things I love most about Lupita is her pragmatic attitude toward her beauty. Slim, with flawless skin, a button nose, high cheekbones and perfect out: she’s enviably beautiful. However, when her stunning beauty is discussed, she graciously acknowledges it but also brings up how that is only one aspect of who she is. She is an endearing star that not only enchants onscreen but offscreen as well.

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I love her energy and everything that she represents. I hope you all enjoy these quotes as much as I have! I’ll talk to you all tomorrow.

(photos courtesy HuffPost, Essence & QuotePrism)

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Reading List: August’s Book

Happy Friday, darlings! I hope you’ve got an exciting weekend planned or, if relaxation is what you need, I hope that you’ve planned some time to chill out and restore yourself.

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It’s time for August’s book!

I tossed around a few options for this month, because I was unsure whether I wanted (yet another) book focused on self improvement or something completely different. However, while looking through a few of my stacks of books, I came across one that I hadn’t read yet and was eager to finally dig into.

August’s book is Elizabeth Takes Off by Elizabeth Taylor. I don’t think I’ve read a celebrity’s autobiography in years, so this will be very different from my norm. I love Elizabeth Taylor (remember I did a post about her nearly a year ago?) so when I purchased this book, it was because I wanted the secret to her crazy-tiny waistline. Yeah, it’s superficial, but if she’s giving out the secrets, I want to be the first in line, with my pen in hand.

When I glanced through the book, I recalled that this is, indeed, a book about her diet, but it’s also a discussion about her personal life and career, so it should be a well-balanced, fascinating read. I’m looking forward to reading this one!

words of wisdom

Words of Wisdom: Sophia Loren

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Beautiful. Earthy. Intelligent. Seductive. All of these descriptors paint a perfect picture of the many elements that make the incredible Sophia Loren. I first learned of Sophia Loren many years ago when I came across her movie Houseboat with Cary Grant. Her hourglass proportions and sultry Italian accent dominated the screen every time she was in a scene. I wanted to look like her and even sound like her when I grew up!

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Sophia didn’t have a fairy tale upbringing. Her parents never married and she dealt with the stigma of being born out of wedlock. She also was poor and got teased for being skinny. She was always a beauty but it’s hard to see your own beauty when there are so many naysayers ready to tell you otherwise.

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Sophia took Hollywood by storm. After all, her physical presence fit in well with the Marilyn Monroe/Elizabeth Taylor aesthetic. Unlike Monroe and Taylor, Sophia was tall and statuesque. At 5 foot 9 inches, Loren was actually equal in height, and occasionally taller than, her male counterparts. She owned her powerful presence and used it to her advantage.

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What is most enchanting about Sophia Loren is her perspective on beauty. Her down-to-earth wisdom is a refreshing take on what really matters. Her emphasis on inner beauty is probably why she is still radiant as an octogenarian. Her love for her family and self awareness shine through in every portrait. We may not all be as physically beautiful as La Loren, but we are certainly able to take on her positive attitude.

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So here’s to the incredible Sophia Loren! Enjoy, and I’ll talk to you all tomorrow.

 

(photos courtesy of AZQuotes, MemesandQuotesInspiration, EliteColumn and DebraSmouse)

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It’s a Sheila Guyse Weekend for Me!

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A smile that could light up any screen

A couple of weeks ago, I threw myself into a Lena Horne movie marathon. I love watching old black-and-white movies because beauty, style and class are always worth watching.

A few years ago, I watched the movie, “Boy What a Girl! and I was captivated by one of the actresses. The actress that really lit up the screen was Sheila Guyse. She played Francine, one of the two daughters of the wealthy Mr. Cummings. She was a gorgeous and talented actress – it’s a shame that she isn’t well known today.

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Guyse as Francine Cummings, with Alan Jackson as Mr. Cummings

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Another photo of Guyse, this time with Betti Mays who played her sister, Cristola Cummings

In honor of Sheila Guyse’s birthday (July 14th) I’m watching three of her movies this weekend. Luckily for us, all of these movies are available on Archive.org and YouTube, so you can enjoy them for free.

A radiant Guyse in Sepia Cinderella

Boy What a Girl was my introduction to Guyse, but I’ve never seen the other two movies on the roster, Sepia Cinderella and Miracle in Harlem. I’ve added some stills from each of the movies, so you can see why she was a sought-after actress during her career.

Serving smoldering side eye in Miracle in Harlem

These movies are not only a tribute to Guyse, but a way for me to celebrate the book that I just finished! I’ll be back with fitness challenge updates tomorrow. Talk to you all soon!

 

Ending this post with a wink and smile (from Boy What a Girl)

words of wisdom

Words of Wisdom: Judy Garland

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One of my favorite singers of all time was Judy Garland. Like most people, I got my first introduction to Garland when I saw “The Wizard of Oz” but as an adult, I got acquainted with her other songs, as well as her life story.

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This petite powerhouse felt with feeling ugly, awkward, and unloved. She was undoubtedly talented but never happy and secure in who she was. That unhappiness bled through her lyrics, making many of her songs heartbreakingly sad. But there is beauty in everything, including sadness. Even in her most painful songs, there is still so much elegance, warmth, and passion: she took heartbreak and turned it into art.

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Garland had such naturalness when she sang: it was never forced or overwrought. I’m sure it was quite a sight to see her perform live, with such an enormous voice coming out of such a tiny woman (only 4’11”!). Recordings of her voice give me shivers now: can you imagine what it was like to hear her live?

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It’s difficult to listen to her recordings and to not be moved by them. I only wish she could have known how beautiful, special and loved she was. I hear her singing and I wish I could have hugged her and reassured her of her immeasurable value. She deserved better, and her tragic death at the age of 47 is a reminder to continue to love and affirm those around us.

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Judy Garland had some poignant musings, and I’m honored to share a few of them with you all today. I hope that Judy’s words move and inspire you. Take care, and talk to you all tomorrow.

(photos courtesy Pinterest, StatusMind, AZQuotes and QuotePrism)

hollywood glamour

Two Lena Horne Movies to Honor Her on Her Birthday

It’s finally the weekend! I’ve been looking forward to this ALL WEEK LONG.

So, what am I going to do, now that the weekend is here? I’m going to enjoy some quiet time at home LOL! I was looking up things to do, and I decided to watch a few movies while I chilled out.

As it turns out, today would have been Lena Horne’s 101st birthday. You all probably remember how excited I was when she got a commemorative stamp. It’s only fitting that today, as I stay in and stay cool, I watch a couple of her movies!

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Resplendent Lena Horne, in a still from Cabin in the Sky

I’ll be checking out Cabin in the Sky and The Duke is Tops. Both movies are part of the public domain so I’ll watch them on the Internet Archive website. Lena’s role in Cabin in the Sky is minor, from what I recall, but I’ll still check it out. And I’m excited to see if she has a bigger role in The Duke is Tops, or if she is a minor character in that one, as well.

Let me get to my movie watching – I’ll talk to you all tomorrow!

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Book Review: How to Be Adored by Caroline Cox

It’s the weekend, beloveds! I wanted to drop in and do this review quickly, as I have a very busy Saturday ahead of me. I’m a sucker for glamorous style, so what better way to honor my passion than to talk about last month’s Hollywood-inspired book selection?

This post is a review of the March reading selection How to Be Adored by Caroline Cox. Throughout the book, Cox assures us that we, too, can be glamorous and adorable.

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The book opens with Cox explaining the glamour is a form of magic: a supernatural force that attracts and charms. The best glamour doesn’t offend nor does it discriminate: it intoxicates both men and women. This kind of sorcery is what the book promises to help readers achieve.

The book assures readers that we need not be born beautiful to become glamorous. It goes through the process of analyzing your physical traits and explaining how to best enhance them. It also dishes on the beauty secrets of several stars.

The book is over 250 pages but is a remarkably quick read (that may have something to do with it’s small size and generous use of photographs). I like the specific details outlined, as well as the behind-the-scenes look at the beauty routines employed by women that we all know and love. It even has recipes for Hollywood-inspired cocktails!

I recommend this book for anyone that enjoys reading random facts about stars as well as learning the beauty secrets for looking flawless on a daily basis. This is a fun read: you’ll enjoy it!